Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles: Los Angeles Grants

OVERVIEW: This prominent L.A. funder supports both Jewish and secular causes through its grantmaking. Areas of support include education, human services, education, Jewish causes, arts and culture, and civic life.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, human services, education, Jewish causes, arts and culture, civic life

IP TAKE: The best opportunity for secular nonprofits in Los Angeles is JCFLA’s General Community Grants program. This is a rapidly growing foundation with more donors chipping in each year, which translates into more grant funds flowing to Los Angeles groups.

PROFILE: The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles was established in 1954 and manages assets for over 1,200 families. In a recent year, it reported managing charitable assets of approximately $985 million and is one of the 10 largest foundations in Los Angeles. Between 1990 and 2015, the foundation distributed over $1 billion in grants to nonprofits.

In recent years, the foundation has contributed the most to education, followed by human services and then Jewish continuity. Other areas of support include health, civic life, arts and culture, international and foreign affairs, and environment/animals/science. The foundation offers several types of grants, including cutting edge grants, Israel grants, general community grants and capital grants.

Cutting edge grants go toward new programs that that address needs in the Los Angeles Jewish community; they range up to $250,000 for a three-year period. Capital grants are also specific to the local Jewish community and are awarded up to $50,000 for construction and renovation projects. General community grants go toward secular causes in the Los Angeles area and are awarded for $10,000 and $25,000. Each year, the foundation chooses a different special interest area, such as homelessness, financial literacy, domestic violence or early childhood education.

Unfortunately for local secular grantseekers, the community grants program does not accept unsolicited proposals. The new year’s focus is announced along with grant awards for that year. But ultimately, all of these grants must serve the Los Angeles community. Community grants are made for program support only.

For organizations affiliated with the Los Angeles Jewish Community, plan to attend a grantseeker’s workshop before applying for a cutting edge grant. Then you can submit a grant inquiry to nstrongin@jewishfoundationla.org. Check the capital grants program page for updated details about how to apply for these grants.

You can learn about JCFLA grantees in the foundation’s grants database and search by interest area, year, and grant type. Keep up with recent happenings on the foundation’s publications and press page.

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